BBC iPlayer to be available on Windows Phone in coming weeks, not so for Sky Go

WP Central

We last covered a Windows Phone version of the BBC iPlayer back in August last year, where we brought the unfortunate news that the corporation was waiting for the platform to support Flash before they'd attempt to bring the on-demand service to Windows Phone owners. Nokia has now informed The Inquirer that the BBC iPlayer will be coming to Lumia owners in the coming weeks.

Now, first question that springs to mind is how has the team at the BBC got round the no-Flash capability? Second, how long is the exclusivity going to be (if at all) with Lumia handsets? Nokia has been busy building relations with developers and companies to bring across apps to the platform and improve the selection of big brand names available. It would make sense for an iPlayer solution to be made available to all Windows Phone consumers, especially since Microsoft has also managed to get the service live on the Xbox.

That's the good news, and we'll look to update you all with more information on dates of availability, as well as any details on a potential Lumia exclusivity. The bad news in this article, and from the Nokia source, is that a Sky Go app is not looking likely for another few months. The service is a popular add-on for Sky customers and will prove to be an issue until a solution is available for Windows Phone with apps already in the iOS and Android app markets. Unfortunately, no details were revealed for 4OD, ITV Player and 5 on Demand.

Source: The Inquirer


Reader comments

BBC iPlayer to be available on Windows Phone in coming weeks, not so for Sky Go


It's a British broadcasting corporation (we actually heavily fund it via TV licenses), so it is looking likely it'll be UK only. Some content over in the US is US only. The world is a large place, not everyone has to suck up to the states ;-)

I know. I just love the channel. I think I watch more British media than American these days. From Torchwood to Hu$tle to Skins, I'm always finding something. Would just love some mobile access to some of the content. Don't hate me for being a fan ;)

Wouldn't it be great if those of us in the US who tend to romanticize the pre-revolutionary era, can subscribe or otherwise also pay those license fees and benefit from the programming there... =P

I'm in Canada an this makes no sense. I can go to my PC and use the iPlayer through my browser, I can go to my Boxee Box and use the official BBC app, but I don't have access to the iPlayer on my Xbox and wouldn't have it available on my Nokia if I had one. BTW, I don't use any VPN or proxy for PC or Boxee it just works.

I get your frustration as I'm quite pissed Amazon hasn't released their apps outside the US and everyone uses it on their browser and other devices.

Well if the iOS/Android versions are U.K only, why wouldn't the WP not follow (though I don't know if the other platforms are region-limited).

I hope we'll see an official BBC News app though.

I've emailed the other three (ITV, Channel 4, Channel 5) and not one had any plans for any apps. ITV's response seemed as if they thought a Windows Phone was a single device (like an iPhone), Channel 4 said they had no plans for Windows Phone and Channel 5 said they were interested but they're focused on connected TV platforms currently.

No doubt we'll see Virgin Media apps around 2020.

Great news. BBC are the biggest iFans out there. If they're bringing the iPlayer to this platform, the WP really has arrived. Now, how about an official BBC news app?

...or even a BBC-A app for that matter. With the distance between UK and US, anglophiles like the Raven and I are left a bit clueless as to when our favorite programs are current and available =[

I found their excuse for not making one weird as there's no flash on iOS either but they managed to do it. I hope it's not exclusive to Lumias (I own a 900).

Looking forward to the BBC iPlayer app, that will be a great addition to WP. Of course it will be just for UK users, as UK TV license fees pay for the BBC. Hope the other UK broadcasters take note and follow BBCs lead.

This is HUGE news for Window phone in the UK. It is obviously now being seen as a real platform! Maybe the news on windows 8 is helping with wp

This is getting annoying now. I got a windows phone before Nokia where looking at wp7.. Now am missing out on the apps constantly due to NOKIA supporting MICROSOFT'S platform. Contract up in nov' I can see myself getting a iPhone.

It is not stupid. He is expressing valid point.
Why should we (people who supported WP for far longer time than Nokia did) be treated as second class citizens?
It was not our fault, that there was no Nokia when we wanted to buy WP, and it is not our fault that our OEMs (HTC, Samsung etc) are not working as hard to get developers in. Is this some kind of punishment to us for supporting WP since the beginning and pioneering it?
I do support Nokia, and praise all the work they are doing to improve the platform. But making so many official apps exclusive is just unfair against early-adopters. Those official apps might have come to the WP some day in the future even without Nokia (admittedly later than this), for everyone to enjoy, but thanks to Nokia we will never be able to enjoy it…
Anyway, regarding BBC iPlayer, I don't think it will be exclusive.

Actually it's very unlikely this app will be exclusive to Nokia, BBC wouldn't want that. They forced Microsoft to make the app available to silver members on xbox because they don't want to limit access. That aside, I get your frustration and I don't think Nokia and Microsoft are doing things right with exclusives. So what, if in November there's a One X or GS3 running WP8, I have to ignore it in fear of missing out on apps? That's just silly.

I'm sorry, your missing the point? Without nokia pushing, there might not have been iPlayer for wp. Without nokia spending insane amounts of money on advertising, developer meetings, developer tools, many people wouldn't even know what wp is. The exclusives are a way of the oem's pushing their brand, it is totally fair, if you like what nokia is doing compared to your oem, then get a nokia as your next phone?

Its nobody's fault? Its technology changing, moving on

can't you dumb fans understand that without nokia , market share of windows phone would be still less and finally even microsoft would have admitted that windows phone was a failed project and dumped it . So, you should be grateful to nokia that because of their efforts , windows phone didnt become obselete . But , instead of showing gratitude , you show attitude . What the hell is wrong with you ? 

I would be surprised if it was an exclusive. Mainly because of the way the BBC is funded, they cant really play that game with being burned by fee payers. Think this will be a case of Nokias grunt bringing the app to us.

BBC won't let it be a Nokia exclusive. They played hard ball with Sky, because Sky wanted iPlayer on Anytime+ but, at the time, this was only available to Sky broadband customers. BBC said they would only allow it if Sky opened up Anytime+ to all customers.

So that's what Sky did, as BBC are such a big player in the OD market they couldn't not have them on their platform.

The same will happen here. BBC will make an app, but won't release just to Nokia.

i don't think they are legally allowed to discriminate who can use their service as the are publicly funded.

It's not about Nokia - I don't think BBC is even allowed to do this. It is supposed to be non-discriminatory and limiting access to only a subset of devices would be against this.

Nokia seems to be doing what MS was not doing to attract/keep costumers. So many good apps that MS didn't worry to have available. It sucks that there only for Nokia. I have a developers unlocked device later on I'll try to run some of these apps on my Samsung focus S to see if they will work

Haha this is brilliant for us UK owners!!  Every new article i read about all these extras that Nokia are busying themselves with to shove onto Lumia owners phones to ensure Windows Phone has just as good a chance as any other OS is simply remarkable
I am SO glad i signed my contract to get the Lumia 900 - a total bummer for no Sky Go but hey its inevitable aint it?

No am not missing the point. Did you not notice when I said Nokia promoting the os instead of ms? The effort Nokia is putting into WP is Brill, far more than I get the impression ms have done.

This is my issue. I got ms instead of android when getting rid of my iPhone as WP was the same across all hardware minus a few apps, which are all lame and variations available via marketplace, now Nokia getting exlusive apps, updates, timed exclusive apps/updates makes the whole os fragmented and punishes me and other samsung/htc/lg users as we joined the party 1st or dont want a Nokia.

This was the reason I didn't get an android as I didn't want a phone which would only have x apps or couldn't run this app.. Getting my next phone means choosing the right oem for an os, ita just like having an android. Now having an iPhone means, apart from very old hardware ill have the same apps, features and John doe.

Google? No. You don't get my points at all. I didn't get an android due to the fragmentation of their ecosystem...

I'd guess the reason the BBC is going through Nokia is that only the manufacturers have access to create apps using native C++ which would be needed for the performance of this app (plus using their existing codebase). Independent devs can only use C# at the moment but this will change most likely with WP8.